Nearly 140 people working in Houston’s food and beverage industry and affected by Hurricane Harvey have received relief funding from the Southern Smoke Foundation.

The nonprofit, which partnered with Legacy Community Health to administer the distribution of funds, donated $501,000 for Harvey relief. Funds were raised via its signature event (Houston’s largest food and wine festival) on October 22 and ancillary events held by industry friends here in Houston and across the country. Workers, business owners and suppliers in the Houston food and beverage community who suffered losses during the storm—from lost wages to ruined homes—were encouraged to apply for relief grants. Of the 161 applications submitted, 139 were deemed eligible and received checks ranging from $1,000 to $9,000.

“I couldn’t be happier that we were able to raise this kind of money to support our friends and neighbors,” says Southern Smoke founder Chef Chris Shepherd. “The fact that so many people came together to make this a reality speaks to the strength and resilience of Houston and our larger hospitality community. It was no small task to pull off an event of this size, with this many moving parts, but it was so worth it to be able to give these checks to folks who really need it right now. This is why we created Southern Smoke—to take care of our own.”

Who We Teamed With

See The 2016 Event